Last week I was helping the Bug study for a science test on human reproduction.

She was learning about puberty, menstruation, and sex. There was not an ounce of self-consciousness or body shaming in my beautiful granddaughter, who is only one inch shorter than I am. I can vaguely remember my big sister Kay filling me in on such things. It was certainly not in my Catholic school’s 5th, 6th, 7th, or 8th grade curriculum. However, the Bride was taught about reproduction in her public school, albeit mostly about anatomy and to fear AIDs as the latest STD. I’m happy to say my Grands are the children of doctors, who never shied away from difficult questions.

Then the Pumpkin who hears everything, asked how old you have to be to have a baby?

And I immediately thought about an Ob-Gyn who did her best with a patient, and her state medical board reprimanded her. They fined her $3,000 – for saving a patient’s life. They came very close to taking her license away. Would you think this doctor must live in a developing country? Wrong; this courageous woman physician lives in Indiana where there is a Republican AG, and she had the audacity to perform an abortion on her 10 year old patient.

The board cleared Bernard on two other counts, determining that she did not improperly report child abuse and that she is fit to practice medicine.


We tried to answer the Pumpkin’s question, but honestly we were stumped. Sure once menstruation starts, the uterus is signaling its ability to carry a fetus, but when is it advisable? Certainly not in the teenage years, right?

Dr Caitlyn Bernard followed protocol. She reported the procedure involving a minor in the time frame required – three days. This speedy reporting process has been determined to help police find and prosecute a rapist, a child rapist – which they eventually did. What exactly did this doctor do wrong? She spoke to the press about it. She spoke in generalized terms to a reporter about her patient’s age and the consequential influx of young girls to Indiana from Ohio after the Dobbs decision. Even the Chair of the Board called Bernard a “good doctor.”

There was no HIPAA violation, all docs talk in general terms about their interesting patients. So long as a patient isn’t named, or identified, doctors have freedom to speak. But telling a reporter that a child had to cross state lines in order to receive life-saving care is a bridge too far?

Dr Bernard’s patient is the same age as our Bug. She aced her science test on the last day of school, and will be turning 11 this summer. Of course I didn’t bring up the Indiana court case while studying human reproduction. I didn’t talk about an extreme Christian anti-woman agenda in our home state. Instead I suggested we all go to the movies!

It was my first time back to a movie theatre since the pandemic. Three generations of girls / women sat through all the ads and trailers, I told the Bug how it used to be full-length cartoons before a movie in my day… and I immediately feel ten times older every time I say something like that. Note to Self – “When I was a girl…” must be eliminated from my vocabulary! Then the movie started, and the thrill of being surrounded by strangers in a dark cavern returned.

“Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret” unfolded in classic pre-teen angst. A rising 6th grader (just like the Bug) must leave her grandmother, Kathy Bates who was channeling Grandma Ada to a T, her friends and her NYC apartment and move to the suburbs. The actress playing Margaret, Abby Ryder Fortson, even resembles the Love Bug with her piercing dark eyes. Her first prayer is pretty concise – “Please don’t let New Jersey be too horrible” and we laughed though southerners didn’t get the joke. Bras and menstrual periods were discussed willy nilly. Margaret has decided she must choose a religion, Judaism or Christianity? And she learns how to navigate new friendships.

If only our country could learn how to keep religion out of politics.

Do You DADU?

While reading the Washington Post this morning, I discovered that ADUs are all the rage in LA. What’s an ADU you might ask? I’ve always called them DADUs – Detached Accessory Dwelling Units – but I guess California thinks “detached” is a given. Due to the sky high prices of real estate in Southern California, and recent loosening of zoning requirements, more and more young people are adding two-story ADUs of around 800 sq ft to their property. For some single home owners, they move into their ADU and rent out the “big” house. Others are more community minded; charging an affordable rent for the ADU as a kind of public service.

I guess the phrase “Granny Cottage” isn’t sexy enough?

Our Altamont Street house in Cville was our retirement plan – a two bed/foursquare brick beauty just a block from the Historic Downtown Mall. It was a duplex, with a whole one bedroom apartment in the basement. Over the years we rented it out to medical and graduate students at a reduced rate and planned on moving in when we could no longer drive. If you’ve been following me for awhile, you know I don’t love being a landlord and our plans to grow roots in the Blue Ridge Mountains changed when the Bride and Groom decided to stay in Nashville.

So here I sit, looking differently at our detached garage. Our first inclination was to tear it down, but the building inspector told us it was structurally sound. Then I got it into my head that we needed to build a lap pool, while I was confined to aquatic physical therapy, and voila, the garage would become our cabana! Looking back at my glory days on the Jersey Shore, it seemed fitting to recreate our beachy-style in this land-locked state. But in light of a looming recession, my pretty pool dream has come to be just that, a dream.

“What about a home gym,” my post-pandemic brain reasoned. I’ve got my Snug, so there’s no way the garage was becoming a She Shed. It should serve both our purposes, right? We could demolish the insides of it in a weekend with some help from friends and family. Heck, Bob has become a handyman extraordinaire in his retirement. And there would be no need for a permit because we’re not adding on any square footage.

But IF we’re thinking long-term, the idea of a DADU makes sense – for out-of-towners, and you’d be surprised how many people like to visit Nashville. We could rent it out and also have it available for family and friends. Bonus points for having a ready-made caretaker’s cottage for help in the future. That would mean adding a small kitchen and a full bath which would also mean permits… I’m not so sure Nashville is as excited about tiny houses as LA. but it’s worth looking into.

As with any building project, you start with a purpose, and like most Google searches I found my way from construction goals to finding my purpose in life. Pretty heavy lifting for a Monday morning. Usually, I’m not one to worry about such things. I tend to just get on with a day unfolding as it will. I don’t believe that everything happens for a reason; I don’t believe that children are gunned down in our schools to serve some higher purpose. I guess this is where religion may help, but I’m OK being in the thin place between practical and spiritual.

That’s why I march and vote and donate for gun reform and I don’t pray. But if you DO pray, all the better. Let’s throw all we can at the problem until it’s fixed. I guess I was just born lucky, or maybe unlucky, to two mothers and a dying father. Knowing my purpose in life was as elemental as breathing air – to write and love with a capital L, to grow loving, creative children into adulthood and later to make sure that all our children are wanted and get to live long, happy lives. The “Dorothy Strategy” from the Wizard of OZ feels about right to me:

“If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own backyard; because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with.”

What Spring?

This morning I opened the door for Ms Bean to go out and was instantly hit with a blast of warm, humid air. I looked up at the mama robin and rolled my eyes, spring in the south is an oxymoron. It comes in the form of rain, interspersed with dry, 70 degree days for a week, maybe two. Then the hot, sticky summer rolls in complete with mosquitoes and melting temperatures. Yesterday it hit 88 degrees. Our Mother’s Day celebration sushi dinner happened inside the Bride’s house, in the air conditioned air.

This past weekend had me reminiscing about mothers’ days over the years. Since I had two mothers growing up, you’d think I’d remember a few details, but those early years are blank. Maybe we didn’t mark the occasion so much, or maybe all that was required was a nice Mother’s Day card? My fondest and earliest memory as a new mom in New England is of a barbeque with my BFF Lee; Bob and Al grilled outside, in our bird sanctuary backyard. Spring in the Berkshires was made only more magnificent because of its winters.

Spring cleaning has adapted itself to spring organizing since I am still working with only one hand. I’ve been doing a deep dive into the Snug, aka my office. With Bob’s help I’ve moved a plant from the window to a bookshelf by the window. I’ve condensed all my bead-making and knitting supplies into one cabinet. All my books are happily visible in two bookcases, no longer in piles. And I’ve spent hours reading over my old poetry and prose, some of it good and some…

I found a list I made 20 years ago – “I WISH”

It’s pretty funny reading it, knowing now what I wish I knew then! Number ONE on the list, “I wish I was more organized!” And number 25 on the list? “I wish it was Spring!” And all the other 23 wishes, believe it or not, I’ve accomplished or I simply don’t care to accomplish – like being fluent in French, or having a cook, or playing the cello. I was prompted to think BIG. Maybe I still wish I could live in a cottage by the sea in Ireland. But the very first things on my Wish List had to do with the Bride and the Rocker (no Grands yet) and Bob, and those wishes have actually come true. TA DA

I remember Ada saying she didn’t want to be an old lady who only talked about her maladies. I get it. I have to fight against becoming an old lady who only thinks about her regrets, like not buying that second home. I could easily make a list of regrets – but to what purpose? Yes I wish I hadn’t wrapped the bulldog’s leash around my right hand; yes I wish I hadn’t climbed the bunk bed ladder. But I cannot, or will not live in the past.

Moving forward, Bob and I attended a garden fundraiser last week for our mayoral candidate, Freddie O’Connell. We stood in the heat with strawberries and with sweat dripping down my back. We saw old friends who asked about my splinted arm, I laughed it off, as if it was nothing but an inconvenience. We listened to Freddie, a no nonsense guy who we call a friend, and a neighbor. The only city council member to vote against funding a ridiculous NFL stadium. The one guy who grew up here in Nashville, on the West side, and wants to grow our city more humanely and less for tourists and destination bridesmaid parties. He wants to build a transit system, and plant trees, build sidewalks, and house the homeless.

There are incentives we can offer Davidson County residents where it’s a privilege to live here not a burden. A key part of that is making technology available, affordable and useful to residents. There’s no one more prepared to leverage technology to move our city forward.


But he doesn’t have a million dollars of his own to run his campaign, like another candidate who is buying up ad time on TV like candy. Still I like betting on the under dog, that was something my foster mom Nell drilled into me. The special election will take place this summer, in the sweltering 90+ degree dog days of August. We’ve ordered our Freddie yard sign, we’ve become people with yard signs on our corner lot. The sign there now says,

“Hate has no place in our neighborhood.”

Here a few old pix I found in a box of high schoolers you may know.


We are in the midst of a battle with squirrels.

No, it’s not that they are attacking our bird feeder; although, we once had a nifty squirrel-proof feeder that gave them the ride of their lives while twirling them off into the lawn. It was hysterical! The problem with our urban species of rodent is that our soffits, attic space and walls have become home base to an extended family. The previous owner of this new/old house planted a gorgeous redbud tree outside Bob’s office, and it serves as the perfect launching pad for the little, grey critters.

Yes, while Bob was insulating the attic, he tried a Havaheart trap and spread peppermint oil around suspected points of entry. We never caught one, but it did seem to cut down on the noise above our heads. Until one day last week, I was making the bed and heard this scratching in the closet wall. Maybe one fell down and couldn’t get back up? That was the tipping point for Bob, he called in the big guns.

By “big guns” I mean two guys and a truck who wrangle squirrels, raccoons and anything else that wants to set up shop in your home. I told Bob I wanted nothing to do with their methods. Then I made the big mistake of walking out the front door.

You see, a mama robin is sitting on her nest in the corner of our porch ceiling. She used to fly away every time we opened the front door, which wasn’t much since we normally use a side door near the garage. But now she’s either gotten used to us or this is a critical point in egg development; she’s staying put! The front of our house faces south, so I’m sure the robin likes her warm, shady corner. I do see her perching on the side of her nest and moving the eggs around.

Y’all know how I feel about birds. Catching a glimpse of the Great Blue Heron who swooped over our garage in Rumson every morning to fish in the river; the woodpeckers gliding around our Cville property; even the doves lined up at our Germantown farmhouse brought me out of whatever doldrums I might be in that day.

“Oh no ma’am, our traps won’t bother that bird,” the young man said. He proceeded to spill a yarn about how they capture squirrels in the city and relocate them out in the country. They have to learn how to live in the wild, he told me, no more garbage cans and easy city pickins. It sounded vaguely like sending a cat to a “farm.” Then the older wrangler chimed in, he assured me that squirrels can chew through wires and actually cause a house fire!

Between rabbits eating wires in our HVAC unit, I thought maybe Mother Nature was out to get us. I mean I loved watching a flying squirrel take up residence in one of Hudson’s bluebird boxes, and I didn’t complain when we had to have SO MUCH honey and bees removed from our chimney in Pittsfield. The beekeeper simply relocated the queen bee. But I draw the line with a rodent who wants to move inside our house, I mean it’s Spring! Why not pick a tree for a nest like all the other squirrels?

I didn’t feel sick until the ice cream truck started winding its way down our street, playing a catchy tune. This is not your mama’s Good Humor truck, it’s a white van like every white van you’ve ever seen in kidnapping documentaries (even though the Bride assures me he’s been around for years and is harmless). As the young guy placed traps on the roof, his partner said, “I wouldn’t let my kids buy ice cream from him.” And before long, I learned that he used to be a cop, and he’s seen a lot, and the only answer he could find to why there is soooo much evil in the world was THE DEVIL.

And he meant it.

So while the robin was bringing new life to our yard, the squirrels were destined for a different fate. To everything there is a season, and my season of discontent, I hope, is over. The splint on my hand should come off next week. Like a race horse, I’m entering the homestretch. Here is our little devil on guard!

On our walk to the Farmer’s Market this weekend, I asked the Bug if she knew what a group of giraffes is called? You already know that I’m a collector of fascinating words and phrases, and I particularly love the terms for groups of animals – the collective nouns. Like a “murder” of crows, or a “flamboyance” of flamingoes. But did you know our family has a thing for giraffes?

I’m not sure why, is it because they have the longest necks or the biggest hearts of all land mammals?

When I was a child, my foster sister took me to the circus. I was too young to remember much, but I would look at that fading black and white picture of me, in my ‘circus’ ie fancy shoes, all the time. I looked so happy. Maybe that was the first time I ever saw a real giraffe. I made sure to take my children to the Big Apple Circus every single year. And now I head straight for the giraffes when we accompany our Grands to the Nashville Zoo. My fantasy safari trip is to the Giraffe Manor, where I could feed a giraffe from my breakfast table!

Then there was this book: “Tall Blondes” https://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/tall-blondes-introduction/2253/

And I was hooked. Because I thought my daughter was a tall blonde who seemed to float on her field hockey team. She had such long legs as a pre-teen, very similar to the Bug, and she would always take the balcony view of things. Mature beyond her age. And because she had volunteered with Planned Parenthood during high school, in her days at Duke she became the unofficial reproductive health dorm advisor. The Bride is a feminist raised by a feminist whose motto was “Our Bodies Ourselves.”

Also having a sex therapist for a grandmother didn’t hurt.

Speaking of sex, or rape actually, I’ve been keeping a watchful eye on the E Jean Carroll rape trial against our twice impeached insurrectionist ex-president. She was a relationship columnist in NY at about the same time I was writing a column for a newspaper in NJ. We are approximately the same age, in our 70s. The Bride was mid-teens in the mid-90s. And this morning I read that Carroll called herself a member of the “silent generation.”

“I am a member of the silent generation … Women like me were taught and trained to keep our chins up and to not complain.” Carroll testified last week that Trump’s attack caused a decades-long trauma in her life. 


And she’s right. We were taught to make jokes. to smile, to shrug off a man’s advances. If you complained about workplace harassment you would lose your job. This is why I believed Anita Hill. When the new car salesman came on to me in my early 20s, I just looked at his wedding ring and said frankly NO, but thanks anyway. After all, it was just us all alone taking a test ride in a car he wanted to sell and I wanted to buy; I knew enough not to make him mad. Otherwise, I might have become a Dateline statistic.

I didn’t report his advances to the car dealership.

This silent generation of women was a group of humans I didn’t think I was a part of, after all I attended consciousness raising groups. I started a new moon women’s group at temple and invented my own menopause ritual. But back then, when Trump raped Carroll, we women thought we had to be as tough as the guys. There was no crying at work, or in baseball. And I can certainly imagine a rape taking place at Bergdorfs, in a very fancy dressing room, and the woman not wanting to call attention to her assault at the time. Especially if it was a powerful man, wielding his power with his (insert appropriate appendage). Because we were also told it’s his recollection against ours – and his always wins.

Mr T’s lawyers didn’t count on the fact that Carroll DID tell some of her friends. She even kept the dress. So she wasn’t so silent after all. Oh how I wish I could be a fly on that court room wall today.

And just in case you thought giraffes were silent creatures, you’d be wrong. They seem silent to our human ears, but they communicate via a low infrasound. How else could they hide their babies while they forage for leaves? How could they move towards a watering hole en masse without communicating? And although some like to call a group of them a herd…

I prefer a TOWER of giraffes! Here I am in my happy place.


Bob and I just watched the latest Ted Lasso!

It was endearing and fun – SPOILER ALERT the team gets into a pillow fight, Rebecca falls into a canal, and Coach Beard turns into Ziggy Pop in clown drag. But I knew that was coming since I follow the Actor/Coach on Insta. We are left wondering if Ted actually tried a psychedelic! And for all you new kids, Baby Boomers may not have had MDMA, but we did a little tripping in our time.

Of course this Ted episode was filmed in Amsterdam.

A city filled with bikes, canals, and adventure. And TULIPS; I was there over 50 years ago and it looks like it hasn’t changed much. The real change is the recent, and not very well studied, use of psychedelic drugs to treat PTSD and severe depression. Do you really need a therapist next to you for an eight hour trip? And which “type” of talk therapy would be beneficial?

“It’s crazy, all the heterogeneity of what folks were trained in,” says Eiko Fried, associate professor of psychology at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands… It’s not normal in a treatment study to say, do whatever psychotherapy you want, for whatever length you want,” says Fried. Such inconsistencies inevitably muddle the results, meaning “you can’t really learn much. You’re shooting yourself in the foot with protocols like that.”


Only to muddle reality further, we awoke to the news that a Welsh soccer team, Wexham, just won a promotion to the professional league! Guess who owns Wexham? Two baby-faced American actors, Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, bought the team for a mere pittance in 2021, its value now quadrupled.

Some people get puppies and bake sourdough in a pandemic, and some buy failing foreign football teams!

“Wrexham’s Association Football Club has formed an important part of the community in the small town in northern Wales since its formation in the 1860s, but despite strong support from local residents it has long struggled financially to pay its players and maintain its operations, almost going bankrupt with multimillion-dollar debts around a decade ago.”


Wales is on my short list of places to see, ever since my sister Kay told me it’s the most beautiful country in the world! And thanks to Ancestry, my Welsh heritage has been confirmed – my maternal grandfather was definitely Welsh. There was always a bit of a rumor around my beautiful, redheaded Nana. The woman who was holding me in a car in 1949 when our family went out for a drive to see a new airport. The woman who brought me to my first motion picture, Picnic, telling me how “grown-up” I was before ratings became a thing. I knew I came from a long line of proud, strong Pennsylvania women.

“Throw your bread out on the water, and it will come back with jelly on it.”

“We’re from County Mayo, God help us.”

I can only remember her long, black skirts and the sound of her black shoes on pine floors; her copious jars of pickles on shelves. But I remember the feeling of independence and confidence she instilled in me so long ago.

Today, a new Ted Lasso will appear on AppleTV. I’ve got a feeling the team’s losing streak is about to end. And I’m sincerely hoping my dance with breaking bones is done. Bob is asking me where I want to go next, the travel bug has infected him again. My gypsy/handy husband is ready to scour the globe, and I’m his reluctant, fragile wife. I didn’t rehearse for this part, I always played the fun-loving sprite, ever eager to try something new.

Opening new pathways in the brain is one way to defray the costs of aging I’m told. Have I told you that Bob has taken up woodworking and built a board and batten wall in our bedroom? With only a one-handed wife, he enlisted a little extra help with painting. Maybe we should go hiking in Wales? No other country has a dragon on its flag!

Good Morning friends! A cardinal is chirping outside my window, the lilacs are blooming and parents are walking their children to school. The Bride just called and we’ll be heading out to a garden center soon on this sunny spring day. But the biggest news is that the plaster cast came off my right hand and I’ll be wearing a removable splint for awhile.

Actually the biggest news is that a number of Nashville women, called #VoicesforsaferTN https://safertn.org/ including Moms Demand Action and my daughter and her physician friends, organized the three mile long chain of red-shirted people from Vandy’s Children’s Hospital to the State House yesterday! They wanted at least 3,000 people to link arms against gun violence and more than 8,500 showed up. 8,500 bipartisan people! One would think this would make national headlines, right?

Wrong… The 1st Amendment case between “Fox entertainment and alternate reality News” and Dominion was settled; China is planning to launch some new spy drones; and Whoopie is trending on Twitter don’t ask me why cause I’ve not watched the View in a very long time.

Now as an old-timey reporter, I know that fires sell newspapers, not the best cow at the fair. Still, only the Rolling Stone picked up the Wednesday linking arms action last night and this morning. Sure the local TV news gave it a few seconds, and the only reason RS gave it a storyline is because there were celebrities involved, including Sheryl Crow. Here is a local spin, which sounds weary if you ask me – the news anchor is probably thinking what’s the point.

“My son just turned 18 in February, he can now finally buy a lighter in Tennessee. He cannot buy cigarettes. He can buy a gun. He can’t buy a beer. I mean, it’s absolutely insane. Insane what’s going on in this country,” said Kirsten Deitelhoff, a supporter along the chain.


Yes I guess some states are more insane than others. But if you want to know how our divided nation went from zero to a hundred so quickly I can report it’s called “enragement algorithms.” Social media is the journalist’s evil step-sister. If you “like” a lot of cat videos, that’s what you get. And if you happen to “like” the previous twice impeached insurrectionist prez, your feed will take you down a rabbit hole of disinformation and conspiracy theories.

In this morning’s Tennessean, the 2.5 Billion dollar new Titans stadium is coming up for a final vote and their headline is: “Slim majority of residents oppose new stadium!” If you go ahead and read the article, it’s actually quite a big majority. But I guess football means MONEY, and children’s lives mean what?

I’m glad my children didn’t have mini-phones taped to their hands all the time, but chances are the Grands will. Ask your sixteen year old self if you can spot the difference between truth and lies. I think I’d start laughing, because of course my lie detector was strong. How is yours doing amid the algorithms?

How to Change

i have no idea what i meant by this title. i started earlier in the week, and promptly gave up trying to type with one finger of my left hand. incase you didn’t know, the grand dog pulled the leash because he is extremely prey driven and we are surrounded by cute little rabbits in this neighborhood. i am now the proud owner of three screws in my right ring finger.

the pumpkin wants to know when i can knit again. the bug wants to know when i can cook again. and bob would just like me to stop breaking bones!

my hand surgeon said that my bones are like BALSA WOOD. according to wickipedia, “Balsa is the softest wood ever measured using the Janka hardness test (22 to 167 lbf). … The wood of the living tree has large cells…” i tried keeping a stiff upper lip while deciding not to call him out on the analogy.

if you’ve been keeping track of the tennessee three, so have we; the optimist in me thinks we’re headed toward a tipping point. if you live in nashville please consider linking arms with our whole family on April 18. have i told you that I was talking with the bride’s friend, a pediatrician at our seder? She said the childrens hospital trauma surgeon is still suffering.

And I’m starting to forget. And then I get down on myself, for forgetting her smile, her voice. Although I do sometimes hear her words in my head – “Don’t wait to be asked; Always go with an open hand; He’s having a good day.”

The Bride asked me to make the tzimmes, which is basically Jewish for roasted carrots. And then I remembered that Ada would add dried fruit and some beef ribs, but I forgot what it was called. I’m bringing the brisket and the Kosher wine but my daughter is graciously hosting again midweek at her big farm table. She’s gathering friends and family to eat and talk about the Great Escape from Egypt. And she is making the haroset, which thrills me to no end.

There are some other lessons too, like which child is getting good at reading Hebrew, and who will be the master sleuth and find the missing matzah. Then I remembered, I have Adala’s “Jewish Home Beautiful” book copyright 1941! I have the cookbook she gave me when Bob and I married; a kind of How-To-Be-A-Good-Jewish-Mother guide sprinkled with recipes for celebrating all the holidays around your table. It’s a smallish blue book, its pages turning a brownish yellow.

IT’S FLANKEN! If you know, you know.

And then I thought about the seven families who will have an empty seat at their Easter table this Sunday in Nashville. Has the pastor lost his faith? He must have been in the chapel when the alarms went off, when his daughter was shot in cold blood. The other two children gunned down in their primary school were children of physicians in town. The Bride’s good doctor friend had sent her kids to Covenant, but then switched schools as the pandemic gained force.

Nashville is really just a small town in big city drag.

And since I’m not one for prayers, I joined the protest at the state capitol.

Bob and I left early Thursday with the Bride to march for all the laws that might help regulate guns in this state. Thousands of people gathered. Sure a “red flag” law may have stopped the shooter from purchasing seven guns in just as many months because she was being treated for a mental illness. But do you really think that would help? In Tennessee? The person trying to purchase an assault rifle would have to tell the store, oh btw I’m thinking of harming myself and others but don’t worry I’m under a doctor’s care…. Or wait, maybe they’d do a background check.

If I sound cynical it’s because I am. I watched a local business guy demonstrate a kind of glass film that stops bullets from shattering glass windows. Although the bullets DO go through and leave a hole, the window doesn’t implode. And the more I heard from Republicans saying, “It’s the doors, lock the doors, it’s the drugs, it’s a mental health crisis, we need more guns in schools, every teacher must carry a gun, more guns, more guns, guns, guns….” I say,

IT IS THE GUNS. Guns are the problem.

We must bring back the assault weapon ban. It worked in the past and there is absolutely no reason why our police should have to go up against these guns of war. It’s the one thing that will work immediately. Sure people who are determined to kill other people will find a way, but they won’t find killing so many that easy anymore. They won’t be able to spray bullets over a country music crowd in Las Vegas. Or into another school. There have been 376 school shootings in this country since Columbine.

There have been 376 school shootings since Columbine

“The federal government does not track school shootings, so The Washington Post has spent years tracking how many children in the United States have been exposed to gun violence during school hours since the Columbine High massacre in 1999…

Across all such incidents, The Post has found that at least 199 children, educators and other people have been killed, and another 424 have been injured.

Even as the list of incidents has expanded, however, the trend lines have remained consistent.”


I don’t understand why our whole country has not decided to go on strike like the French. Today, schoolchildren in the city were going to walk out at the exact same time the shooter opened fire last Monday. My generation walked out of school to protest dress codes, and as a precursor to sit-ins over the Vietnam War. Schools don’t have to be a war zone. What would happen if teachers walked out tomorrow and police the next day? Imagine if nurses and doctors all went on strike. Why are we tolerating this?

Have you actually seen what an AR15 does to a nine year old child’s body?

If we cannot or will not protect our children, what kind of cowards are we? I will continue to cause good trouble, as I know many of my readers will until we fix this public health epidemic of gun violence. We have to change. It’s time to clean out the pantry and color eggs.

Or we could build a moat around every school in the country.


What does it feel like to open the New York Times tab on your laptop and read, “The Privilege of a New Start?” Infuriating. The article is about Rupert Murdoch’s (age 92) engagement to Ann Smith (66). It’s all about how men have the capacity to reinvent themselves by marrying someone decades younger, whereas women do not.

“We’re both looking forward to spending the second half of our lives together.” While an ironic, even witty remark, his words nonetheless contain that sense of futurity, of more life left, that new marriage conjures. Everyone has a right to pursue such pleasures, but the playing field is hardly level.” 


So I was going to write about ageism and sexism today. I had read the latest National Geographic article titled, “Patriarchy is not destiny” with my morning coffee. I was all up in a fury about how a 90 year old MAN could blithely refer to the “second” chapter of his life, especially while leading the charge of misinformation in the news industry all while being sued by Dominion voting machines! Then my Son-in-Law texted me –

School shooting at Covenant in Nashville,

reportedly multiple injuries (one website said 4 dead including the shooter). 

VUMC is on mass casualty alert.

And now I’ve been on a family text chain all morning. I’ve been posting and reading and watching our local coverage. My body has been alternating between flight and fight, sending messages to my brain that our time here on earth is up; we can’t save the planet and we’re killing our children… we seem to be OK as a country with children dying in their schools.

The extreme Right BatWing of the once GOP is not willing to give up their assault weapons. Please make me understand why you need these guns?

A teenage girl walked into a small Christian school this morning with TWO assault rifles and a pistol! She was shot dead by the Metro Nashville PD. Thank God our brave police officers did not stand around waiting for permission to engage. Still, THREE children were killed, and THREE adults. SEVEN DEAD.

I am sick. Sick to my stomach of these cowardly politicians who send Christmas cards of their families holding guns. Sick to death of their concern for a fetus. Sick of their thoughts and prayers.

Bob just asked me what I wanted planted as he needs to put his hands in the dirt. I have no more words. The Groom texted that Vandy is supposed to go back to normal, they didn’t get mass casualties. Seems a girl shooter doesn’t believe in spraying bullets randomly. Looks like she targeted her victims.

Want to read up on the history of assault rifles?

“Today, the AR-15 is the best-selling rifle in the United States, industry figures indicate. About 1 in 20 U.S. adults — or roughly 16 million people — own at least one AR-15, according to polling data from The Washington Post and Ipsos.”

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